Bill Bailey credits 'brilliant teacher' who helped him achieve his music dreams - 'she gave me confidence'

Virgin Radio

17 Jun 2024, 11:38

Bill Bailey

Credit: Getty

Comedian and musician Bill Bailey has praised one vital teacher at school who helped him reach the incredible career he has today. 

The Strictly Come Dancing winner is front-and-centre of a new Sky Arts project, Bill Bailey's Musical Master Crafters: Juniors, in which he encourages youngsters to get in touch with their creative side. 

The special coincides with Sky Arts’ Access All Arts Week, which is a cause very close to Bill’s heart. 



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Bill became famous for using both music and comedy in his own stand-up shows, and credited the work of one school teacher who saw his potential from an early age. 

During an exclusive chat with, the Black Books actor revealed how his music teacher became pivotal to his own work. He told us: “She encouraged me to play the piano, she encouraged me to perform in front of the school. I did a concert and things I would never have done, had it not been for her. 

“I think that that was something which I still think now that had a profound effect on me throughout my entire life. Her encouragement meant that it gave me confidence to perform. That's something which I still remember every time I step on stage. It's such an important thing.”

Bill’s mission to get more children playing musical instruments comes from his own personal journey, as well as his wish to see more kids from different backgrounds get more chances to show their talent to the world. 

He added: “Music is what something that has been a part of my life since I was a tiny little kid, even before I went to school. I always played an instrument, played the piano, taught myself guitar. It also teaches you a lot of stuff about other things as well. It's not just about the performance.

“What’s so important about this is it's not just about considering performance or being the person on stage or in front of the camera. It's about all the other aspects of the arts, which are equally important but require different skills.”

Elsewhere in our eye-opening chat with Bill, he also gave credit where credit is due to another source of inspiration - Eurovision!

After confessing that he penned a rather “mischievous” Eurovision entry one year, the Never Mind the Buzzcocks panellist admitted he’s not missed a single year of the competition since it started. 

The funnyman explained: "You know, more people watched the last one, I think, than ever before. It’s become a hugely, hugely popular event. And it is just fantastic. I don’t think I’ve ever missed one."

Bailey's love affair with Eurovision began when he was nine years old. He fondly recalled the unique appeal of the competition: "How could it not be? Just everything about it all, going around all the different countries, 'Hello!' And then all these different weird presenters, they’re like, you know, sort of from these different countries and, and it was like a window into the whole of Europe, you think, 'Wow, look at these people! What language do they speak and where, who’s this? Where are they coming from?'"

Bill Bailey’s Musical Master Crafters: Juniors will air on 20 June at 8pm on Sky Arts.